POSITION : 35°54'•15 N and 014°29'•91 E
MONDAY 17TH SEPTEMBER, 2012 , 18oo UTC
it's the sicilian people that make the difference.
They are warm people, open to foreigners who show any interest in them, and respond with an open heart that is incredible. And then there are these beautiful women. Whilst I recommended the Ladies to visit Brindisi, the Gentlemen of this world should come and see sicilian women. And they can ride ! Really ! I mean they ride their Vespas ( scooters ) in such a fashion that makes Casey Stoner on his Honda look old.
The picture shows the old bugger in the morning fuming away his stink, and when you are on the receiving end of the wind, you think you have applied under your armpits a deodorant called 'Hot Magma' or something to that effect.
And outside the marina, sicilian life starts immediately, and as in all other places of this world, society shows itself with all pros and cons.
What I already saw and experienced in Naples and its surroundings, you also experience here: The rubbish
( rifiuti ) on the streets or better along the streets. Of course it is an administration problem, but isn't that too easy as an excuse ? I mean, the world has many poor areas, but it does not mean necessarily that is has to be dirty. Where has all the money gone that was and still is being pumped into this region. The streets have as many potholes as a swiss cheese, can't they be fixed ? Can't the many unemployed that truly exist here, do a service for their community. Wouldn't it be good to be proud of having a clean place to show the world. To me even Cape Verde, which I visited some years ago on my first transatlantic adventure, made a cleaner impression than what I see here. And that was really 'Third World ". Come on, proud people of Sicily, take a broom and get going. Do you really want to be compared with Cape Verde ? This beautiful land of yours deserves your respect. Nothing more to be said, I guess.
And then there are the individuals, lovely peole, and funny as well :
and a doctor is always at hand, with spewing Etna close by, you definetly need a specialist for respiratory problems. Who needs Saatchi&Saatchi for advertising in Sicily !
Like the most beautiful place I stumbled across by accident. called Isola Bella (beautful island ) close to Taormina, between here and Messina. I just saw a sign 'LaPlage Resort', turned the car and found an amazing place. I took a picture later from higher up, so you get a feeling for the place. The Director of this marvel is called Guiseepe Marchese, he is actually from Naples, and he knows a friend of mine, Michele Apichella from Vico Equense,which is close to Sorrento. Now didn't I tell you THE WORLD IS SMALL !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I can truly say, if you want to stay in a marvellous place, go there. Of course I will discuss with Mr Marchese a commission fee for all the thousands of people who will now come and visit the resort. But do I really want that ? Pls people, just go in 10's at a time, and pls organise yourselves in such a way, that you spread over the whole year., and not all just in August. So we avoid huge traffic jams on the ( of course bumpy ) road in front of the resort.
Anyway the rest of the trip is quickly told. On the 15th of September off to Syracuse, and then arriving on the 17th in Malta. This concluded the first leg of our journey, all together so far 628 nautical miles logged, some sleepless nights in between, and specifically at the end a lot of wind. A LOT OF WIND !
And before I forget it, I know you have been waiting for this : When we arrived in Malta Manoel Island Marina, the third person on the platoon I asked to explain me something, said that he had seen my boat. and when I looked at him I instantly recognised him as the nice chap who helped me last year in Hvar / Croatia on my return from the Ionian Islands with my ropes when leaving. Honestly I am not inventing these stories. He is Jason from CJ Marine Services, Malta (+356 7949 5356 , in case you should ever need any help in Malta ! ) , and was on board a large motor yacht as an engineer when he thought I might need some help. He will also help us tomorrow doing the provisions. What a nice chap. Now have I mentioned it before ? In case I haven't here it comes .........
THE WORLD IS SMALL, PEOPLE, THE WORLD IS SMALL !!!!!!
( it all depends on you though )
YOURS, MASTER MIKE